At some point about a month ago, solidly colored hair seemed boring.
It’s not like I disliked my hair color. I’m blessed with a rich brown with some natural highlights. The kind of color that makes hairdressers pause and go, “This is your natural color??”
But the more I saw ombré, the more I thought, “How cool …” Yes, it took me four years to come to this conclusion after first seeing it around. But the ombré trend has morphed somewhat, from “I ran out of money for highlights” to “I deliberately dipped my hair into some dye and this happened.” It actually sort of matches the trends of stool legs dipped in gold, and dipped Indigo curtains, and color-blocked outfits. It just … works.
Plus, lately I’ve been letting my hair air dry pretty much very day, and the ombré seems to tip the messy waves over from the Given Up look into the Too Cool to Try territory.
Also, I moved to Brooklyn. So there’s that.
Anyway, for some reason I was not content to just bleach my hair. No, I wanted unicorn hair. I wanted magic and sparkles and hope sprinkled into my tresses. So I called Hale and made an appointment for that very same afternoon (only possible because it was a Jewish high holiday) with Dave, and emailed him some pins for inspiration. When I arrived, we discussed, then took a field trip to the local Ricky’s.
Now, the Ricky’s in TriBeCa near the salon is not great, in the sense that the don’t carry even half of the Manic Panic colors available. I would suggest going shopping for hair color before you get to your salon for that reason. So we improvised a bit. We chose Cleo Rose fading into Cotton Candy Pink, and petering off at the tips to let the blond show through. The top layer was left brown, so that it was just a tad more subtle. Dave got to mixing up the formaldehyde-free bleach and applying.
While he’s doing that, let me tell you that Manic Panic is a medium on the toxin scale according to the Environmental Working Group’s Skin Deep Database. This unfortunately is the norm for hair coloring products, even natural ones. It is vegan, however.
Four hours later …
Yes, four hours later. It took that long to super-bleach my hair, apply striations of dark pink and light pink, let it set, wash it out, and trim my hair.
But oh, was it worth the look. I feel like such a bad bitch. And now that I’ve deliberately faded it with a few washings, I’m ready to show it off to the internet. What do you think?
Photo credits: Michael Parmelee